NFC, Linux kernel 3.1 and Smartphones

Near-Field Communication is available in the kernel version 3.1

I was reading yesterday the well known site kernelnewies about the news and announcements of the changes and benefits of the new and future versions of the kernel, and for my surprise, I saw that this release adds a new NFC subsystem and a new NFC socket family: simply awesome !!!

What is NFC

If you don’t know what is NFC, I will try to explain you in simple terms. Near-Field communication is a technology that provides a simplified way to exchange data between devices in close proximity (a few centimeters) using a wireless connection. You can share photos, pictures, media files, applications, and many more; but the best use for this is for payment througth of these types of chips in your smartphone that can have your credit card information inside them. NFC is expected to become the de-facto system for making payments in US. There are many smartphones and tablets that have these type of integrated chips already in the market; I will give a few examples:

You can see that I’m a big Android fan; for that reason, all smartphones that I put here are Android-based mobiles. Apple has commented too that on the next IPhone 5, they will integrate a NFC chip too. You can read about this here and here.

Some of these chips are manufactured by NXP Semiconductors, and Sony Ericsson, for example, announced that will use the PN65 chip model, which includes the NFC radio controller, the embedded secure element and NFC software. The embedded secure element enables NFC to be used for mobile transactions. This software developed by NXP is Open Source and is available inside the Android platform and enables the Google Wallet application.

Final Thoughts

Always, It’s very cool for me, to see this kind of innovation behind Open Source’s technologies; how many big companies can trust on them and build beautiful and cool products based on these platforms. I’m very impressed with these smartphones, and I’m seriously to buy one of those (the Xperia Play 4G or the HTC Incredible S are my favorites, Which are your favorite?).

Happy Hacking !!!

Marcos Ortiz

Marcos Ortiz